What do you believe?
Question: What forces have shaped America?
D. Quinn Mills: America is shaped primarily by two I think. Number one is it isolation. We are protected behind our oceans, and that is as true today as it is been before, we went through World War I and World War II without any significant damage at all to our homeland. Almost no other major country in the world--certainly none of the major countries Eurasia--did that and it really does shaped the way we feel about the world. The second thing is that we had, what is largely, because we are settled by immigrants and the mixture of the world, it’s a, we had a largely blank page on which to write and we are largely our own creation for good and bad, in a way that is simply not true of most other countries. I think of the Russians a great deal. There is a country; there is a group of people who have been invaded again and again and again, and it's a totally different culture as a result of that than is our culture. We’ve never been invaded essentially, except briefly by the British in two wars around the time of the Revolution. So, I think the isolation and the ability to develop ourselves as we saw fit are the two really important things.
Recorded on: 9/27/07
We were an isolated, blank page of human history, says Mills.
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It's one factor that can help explain the religiosity gap.
- Sociologists have long observed a gap between the religiosity of men and women.
- A recent study used data from several national surveys to compare religiosity, risk-taking preferences and demographic information among more than 20,000 American adolescents.
- The results suggest that risk-taking preferences might partly explain the gender differences in religiosity.
She met mere mortals with and without the Vatican's approval.
- For centuries, the Virgin Mary has appeared to the faithful, requesting devotion and promising comfort.
- These maps show the geography of Marian apparitions – the handful approved by the Vatican, and many others.
- Historically, Europe is where most apparitions have been reported, but the U.S. is pretty fertile ground too.
A NASA astronomer explains how astronauts dispose of their, uh, dark matter.
- When nature calls in micro-gravity, astronauts must answer. Space agencies have developed suction-based toilets – with a camera built in to ensure all the waste is contained before "flushing".
- Yes, there have been floaters in space. The early days of space exploration were a learning curve!
- Amazingly, you don't need gravity to digest food. Peristalsis, the process by which your throat and intestines squeeze themselves, actually moves food and water through your digestive system without gravity at all.
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